Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Dhaba Style Dal Tadka

Highways and dhabas in India are like two sides of the same coin. Inseparable! Talking of dhabas, there is one dish you cannot miss and which you keep yearning for. The special black gram dal, popularly known as dhaba daal, and hot tandoori rotis fresh from the tandoor. With a plate of chicken fry and freshly cut onions to go with it, your soul is satisfied and your journey even more enjoyable. 

1 cup black gram dal/urad dal
1/2 + 1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp salt
For the tadka powder
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 1/2 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp mace powder
1/2 inch cinnamon
1 tsp kashmiri chilli powder
1 tsp turmeric powder
For the tempering
1 medium onion chopped
1 medium tomato chopped
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp ginger garlic paste
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 slit green chilli
2 tsp tadka powder
Coriander leaves for garnishing
1 tbsp oil

Wash and soak the dal overnight. In a cooker, pressure cook the dal with a little salt and turmeric until done. Remove from heat and let it cool.
In a pan, dry roast all the ingredients listed under tadka powder. Cool and grind to a fine powder. Keep aside.
In another pan, heat oil and splutter the cumin seeds. Add the ginger garlic paste and fry for sometime.  Now add the chopped onions and fry till translucent. Tip in the chopped tomatoes, green chilli, tomato puree, and tadka powder. Fry everything together till oil separates. Now add the boiled dal and bring to a boil. Adjust the seasoning and add a little water if it is too thick. Remove from heat and garnish with coriander leaves. Serve hot with tandoori roti/naan.


Monday, 23 December 2013

Whole Wheat Custard Almond Eggless Cake

Just back from a long long holiday and after so much of eating and indulging, I wanted to bake something healthy for my hunger pangs. I had a pack of custard powder open for long along with some ground almonds. A quick Google search landed me with a nice and easy custard marble cake recipe which can be put together in less than 15 minutes, if you have all the ingredients ready. However, I felt a little lazy to separate the batter and so changed the recipe to make it a Custard Almond cake. The result was a soft and delicious crusty tea time cake which can be relished without any guilt!

3/4 cup whole wheat flour/atta
2 tbsp all purpose flour/maida
1/2 cup custard powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
2 tbsp oil
1/4 cup ground almonds
Silvered almond slices for the topping

Sift together the flour, custard powder, salt, and baking soda. Keep aside.
In a bowl, mix milk, sugar, vanilla essence, and oil. Fold in the dry ingredients little at a time and mix everything well till no lumps remain. Add the ground almond powder and mix again. 
Pre-heat the oven at 180 degree celsius. Line a rectangular baking tin with butter paper or grease the tin. Pour the cake batter into the tin and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Take out from the oven and let it cool in the tin for 10 minutes. Later, cool completely on a wire rack and serve. It can be refrigerated for up to 1 week in air tight containers. 



Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Soft and Spongy Whole Wheat Buns/Pav

To think of healthy alternatives for the regular food has become more of a necessity in today's world. However, healthy food usually comes with a compromise on the taste factor. However, there are always exceptions. Today's recipe of whole wheat buns is an example of tasty healthy alternative to the regular flour buns. These buns are soft and spongy and remain such even after a day or two after baking, which is usually not the case with whole wheat buns. Just warm it and eat it and enjoy a guilt free meal.

3 cups whole wheat flour (you may add a little additional flour while kneading)
1 tbsp instant dry yeast
1 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp butter, softened
75 ml warm milk (add little at a time to avoid adding additional flour)
1/2 cup warm water
1 egg
Olive oil for oiling hands and bowl

In a bowl, mix sugar in the lukewarm water and add the yeast. Make sure the water is not too cold or too hot. Else the yeast will not proof. Let it stand for about 10 minutes until frothy and bubbly and starts rising. For reference, see the picture below.
In a separate bowl, mix the flour and salt. Make a well in the center and add the softened butter, yeast mixture and egg. Start kneading the dough by adding little milk at a time. Continue kneading for about 8-10 minutes till the dough is moist but non-sticky and a finger pressed down does not come back with a bit of dough. Ensure, however, that the dough is not too dry. Lightly oil your hands and rub your hands on the dough. With a little more oil, lightly grease the bowl. Cover the bowl tightly and keep it in a warm place for 1-2 hours or until the dough has doubled. In some cases, the dough does not rise doubly. However, if your yeast has proofed well, the buns should be soft and spongy after baking.
Once the dough has risen, line a round baking pan with parchment paper. Lightly knead the dough for 3-5 minutes, punching out the air. Do not overknead. Now take lemon sized balls and arrange on the baking sheet. Repeat for the rest of the dough. See the picture below for reference.
Cover with a cling wrap and keep it in a warm place for another hour. The balls would now be clinging to each other as shown in the picture above.
Pre-heat the oven on toast mode at 200 degree celsius. Brush the top of the buns with a little milk and bake them for 20-25 minutes until golden brown on top. Take out from the oven and immediately brush a little butter on the buns. Transfer to a wire rack and keep covered with a kitchen towel for 10-15 minutes. Your soft and spongy buns are ready to be eaten. I teamed it with Mumbai style Pav Bhaji.

Bori Diye Phulkopir Patla Jhol (Lentil Dumplings in a Spicy Cauliflower Gravy)

It's that time of the year when we pack our bags and go for a long vacation. With or without the baby, we have never broken this tradition ever since we got married 6 years back (and tomorrow is our anniversary). However, this time it is an extended holiday with first a quick India trip for a wedding and then finally to our holiday destination, Phuket. Ohh! How I love this place. The food, the shopping, the beach, and most importantly the massage. So before leaving for this long holiday, I need to, or rather want to, finish off all groceries and have a clean and empty refrigerator barring a few eggs (which I will need on the day I come back). Today's curry is a bengali spicy curry with some cauliflower florets and homemade fried lentil dumplings. Enjoy with a bowl of plain rice and you are done with a tasty dinner/lunch without much hard work.

1/2 cup cauliflower florets (roughly 5-6 florets)
1 medium potato, cubed
1/2 cup masoor daal, washed and soaked for at least 2 hours
1 medium tomato, chopped
1 inch piece ginger, grated
1 fresh chilli
1/2 tsp onion seeds (kalonji)
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp coriander powder
2 tsp red chilli powder, divided
Salt to taste
1/2 tsp sugar
Coriander leaves for garnishing
1 tbsp mustard oil
Refined oil for frying the lentil dumplings

Drain the soaked masoor daal and blend it in a blender to a smooth paste, preferably without any water. Transfer to a bowl and add a little salt and half of the red chilli powder. Mix well. Heat sufficient refined oil in a wok, and add spoonfuls of the blended lentil paste and fry till golden brown on all sides. Drain excess oil on paper towels and keep aside. Once the entire paste is used up, fry the cauliflower florets and then the potato cubes in the same oil. Drain excess oil and keep aside.
Heat 1 tbsp mustard oil in another pan and add kalonji or onion seeds and let it crackle. Add the grated ginger and fry for a minute. Now add the tomatoes and fry till oil starts leaving from the sides. In a small bowl, take all the dry spices along with salt and sugar and make a paste with a little water. Add it to the tomatoes in the pan and fry for 2-3 minutes till oil starts appearing on the sides. Now add the cauliflower and potatoes and mix it well with the masala. Add 1 cup water and bring to a boil. Now simmer the heat and cover cook for 5 minutes or until the vegetables are just done. Now add the fried lentil dumplings and cover cook for another 5 minutes. Garnish with coriander leaves and remove from heat.


Monday, 9 December 2013

Lusciously Soft and Creamy Custard Buns

 Most people call baking an addiction. I call it an inspiration. The more you bake, the more inspired you are to bake even better and better and better. While in India my baking skills were restricted to just occasional cakes, coming to Singapore has opened a whole new world of baking for me. The easy availability of key ingredients is the prime reason behind it. However, the main credit goes to my landlord here who has provided us with a wonderful oven, along with other furnishings, which really inspires me to bake. I started with cakes and then slowly moving onto cookies and now my latest obcession is with breads. So here's an interesting recipe of sweet bun stuffed with soft and creamy custard.

For the custard
3 tbsp custard powder
500 ml milk plus 100 ml for dissolving the custard
6 tbsp sugar (or as per your taste)
2 tbsp fresh cream

For the buns
2 cups bread flour (or 1 3/4 cup all purpose flour and 2 tbsp vital wheat gluten)
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp yeast
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg
100 ml warm milk plus for brushing
Olive oil for brushing and for oiling hands and bowl
3 tbsp butter, softened plus for brushing

For the custard
In a cup, mix the custard powder and 100 ml cold milk and dissolve completely till no lumps appear. In a heavy bottomed vessel, heat the remaining milk and bring to a boil. Add the sugar and slowly mix in the custard, stirring continuously till all mixed well. Continue stirring on low heat till the custard is about to thicken. Mix in the cream and stir till dissolved completely. If the custard by now gets too thick, stir in an additional 1-2 tbsp of milk and remove from heat. Ensure that the custard is similar to cake batter consistency. Making it too thin will make it difficult to stuff into the buns. Pour into another bowl and let it cool completely. Refrigerate for a few hours to set it completely.

For the buns
In a bowl, mix butter, milk, and sugar. Add 1/2 cup flour and yeast and make a smooth paste. Keep aside covered in a warm place for 45 minutes.
In a separate bowl, take the flour and salt and mix well. Make a well in the center and add the yeast mixture, egg and knead well to a soft and non-sticky dough. You nay apply some olive oil on your hands for a smoother and quicker kneading. Continue kneading for another 5-7 minutes till the dough becomes soft and elastic to touch. Apply a little oil on the dough and cover with cling wrap. Keep in a warm place and let it rise for 1-11/2 hours or until double in size.
Once the dough has proofed, take it out on a floured surface and lightly knead the dough for few more minutes. Prepare a baking sheet. Take large lemon sized balls and make a small indentation in the center. Add about little more than a teaspoon of the refrigerated custard and close again into a ball. Repeat the process for the rest of the dough. Line all the balls on the baking sheet about an inch apart and keep it covered with a cling wrap for another 45 minutes for the second proofing. 
Pre-heat the oven at 180 degree celsius on the toast mode (both the rods heated).
Brush the buns (which would have again doubled in size) with some milk and bake in the toast mode for 10-12 minutes until golden on top. Remove from oven and brush with melted butter while still hot and cover with a kitchen towel for few minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Your super soft and creamy custard buns are ready to be served.

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Chilli Chicken

Indo Chinese dishes are a popular favorite in most households. The reason being the ease of making these dishes and even more so, the availability of the key ingredients in your kitchen counter. However, most often the absence of tried and tested recipes for these dishes are either not available or there are so many on the internet that we often get confused which recipe to follow. Among all other dishes, chilli chicken is a dish which I have always loved, specially on rainy wintery evenings. I chose a recipe from Sanjeev Kapoor and I was quite happy with the result. A restaurant quality authentic chilli chicken dish awaits you in the kitchen!

300 gms boneless chicken, cubed
2 tbsp cornflour, divided
2 tbsp soy sauce, divided
1 tbsp red chilli sauce
1 egg
1 tsp black pepper powder
6-7 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 medium onions, chopped
3-4 red/green chillies chopped
1/2 cup capsicum diced
2 sticks spring onions, chopped
1 cup chicken stock
1 tsp vinegar
1/2 tsp salt or to taste
1 tbsp oil plus for frying

Take the chicken pieces in a bowl and add half of the cornflour, egg, half of the soy sauce, salt, and pepper. Mix well. Heat sufficient oil in a wok and put the chicken pieces little at a time and fry till golden brown on all sides. Do not overcook. Drain excess oil on paper towels and keep aside.
In a separate pan, heat 1 tbsp oil and add the garlic. Fry till golden brown. Add the chillies and fry for few more minutes. Add the onions and fry till translucent. Add the sauces and stir. Add the capsicum and spring onions and fry further. Add a little chicken stock and bring to a boil. Dissolve the remaining remaining cornflour in the rest of the chicken stock and add it to the pan. Mix well. Now add the fried chicken pieces and stir. Thicken the gravy to your desired consistency. I did not add any additional salt as the sauces and the stock already had in it. However, adjust seasoning as per your taste requirements. Finish off with vinegar and remove from heat after 2-3 minutes. Serve with lightly seasoned veg hakka noodles or fried rice and enjoy the winters.

Pumpkin Soup

Staying healthy has become an important factor in today's lifestyle. We hardly realize how fast time flies. From morning till evening, all that we do is perform our mundane duties without thinking for a moment about the duty we owe to our body. There will be only a handful of people who can manage to squeeze in some time for themselves and can hit the nearby gym or some fitness classes. For the rest, it's only the weekend (if they can manage time with their family). Having said that, eating healthy is another important aspect of staying healthy. Today's recipe is a step towards eating healthy food. Pumpkin is one such vegetable which many people find very yucky to eat and very conveniently avoid eating it. As a result, the nutrients and goodness of this poor vegetable go waste. But now no more! 

500 gms pumpkin, cubed
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
200 ml milk
4-5 cups chicken stock
1 tbsp olive oil
1 bay leaf
A pinch of cinnamon
Salt and pepper to taste

In a deep bottom pan, add olive oil and fry the onions and garlic till fragrant and golden brown. Add the  cubed pumpkin pieces and fry for 3-5 minutes until browned. Add the chicken stock and bay leaf and cook covered until the pumpkin is tender. Remove from heat. Drain the stock and keep aside and blend the pumpkin to a smooth paste. Return to the pan and add the stock and milk. Bring to a boil and slightly thicken, if necessary. Season with salt and pepper and a pinch of cinnamon. Simmer for 2-3 minutes and remove from heat. Serve with a delicious toasted garlic bread.

Saturday, 7 December 2013

Chicken Bolognaise Pasta

My husband the other day surprisingly made a request for Italian food (he is more of a desi guy), specifically Bolognaise Pasta. I quickly looked up the recipe on the internet and was happy to know how easy it is. The next morning after breakfast, I quickly put my baby on the pram and off we went for the supermarket to get the ingredients. As luck would have it, it started raining. Thankfully, I was carrying the pram rain cover and while my baby was saved, I got completely drenched. This, however, gave me a silly little chance to prove to my husband how much I love him that I went in the rains to cook him his favorite pasta (women never leave a chance, anyway)! So here is the easy peasy recipe of chicken bolognaise pasta. Traditionally, the bolognese sauce is served on top of the pasta. I, however, like it mixed together with the pasta. You can choose your options.

For the Bolognaise sauce
300 gms chicken mince
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 stick coriander/cilantro chopped
5 heaped tbsp tomato pasta sauce
1/2 cup carrot finely chopped
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 tbsp olive oil 
For the pasta
2 tsp butter + 2 tsp olive oil 
300 gms uncooked spaghetti 
1 clove garlic minced 
1 tsp oregano
Salt and pepper to taste
Grated parmesan cheese to serve (I skipped it as my husband does not like cheese)

For the Bolognaise Sauce
Heat oil in a frying pan and add the onion, garlic, coriander, and carrot. Fry till onions are translucent and carrots tender. You can cover cook for 3-5 minutes to ensure quick cooking. Add the chicken mince. Cook with a wooden spoon to break up the mince for 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Add pasta sauce and stock. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook covered for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce has thickened slightly. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and keep aside.
For the pasta
Cook the pasta as per the packet instructions. Add a hint of olive oil while boiling to ensure non-sticky pasta and run through cold water once done to avoid over cooking. 
The assembly
As I mentioned earlier, I like my pasta mixed with the sauce. If you like it separate, you can skip this step. In a large skillet, heat the butter and olive oil. Add the minced garlic and oregano. Add the cooked pasta, little at a time, and give a good stir so that the oil gets coated evenly. Now add the prepared Bolognaise sauce and mix thoroughly. Remove from heat and serve hot with grated parmesan cheese and a glass of good wine!



Thursday, 5 December 2013

Semolina Bread

Interesting recipes are always an intriguing thing for me and if it involves baking, it becomes even more imperative for me to give it a try. This recipe was yesterday posted on a food group that I regularly follow and I immediately got onto the job. The process is similar to any other regular bread with the only difference of adding semolina along with the flour. The result is wonderful crusty bread on the outside and a soft pillowy bread on the inside. For all bread lovers and bakers I highly recommend this recipe. As for my mother, she just cannot believe it when I tell her I no longer buy bread from the market!

For the sponge
1 1/2 cup plain flour
1 tsp instant dry yeast
1 cup warm water

For the dough
All of the sponge
1/2 cup flour
3/4 cup semolina
2 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp olive oil for rubbing the hands and bowl

In a bowl, take the flour for the sponge. Mix the yeast in the luke warm water and add it to the flour. Mix well to make a smooth paste. Cover and keep it in a warm place for about an hour or until doubled.
In another bowl, mix the flour, semolina, and salt. Add the oil and the sponge. Rub a little oil on your hands and knead the dough to a smooth elastic but non-sticky dough. If the dough feels too sticky, rub a little more oil on your hands. Once the dough comes together, wrap it tightly in a cling wrap and rubbing a little oil on the sides of the bowl cover and keep it in a warm place to rise until doubled for about an hour. 
On a floured surface, take out the dough and lightly knead it for two minutes. Lift up the sides and fold it back again. Taper the ends giving it the shape of a loaf and cover with a cling wrap for another hour or until doubled. 
Pre-heat the oven at 200 degree celsius. With the help of a knife, make three insertions on the top at an angle of 30 degree. Bake the bread for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown on top and tapping on the top returns a hollow sound. Remove from the oven and cool completely. Slice the next day for a refreshingly fresh breakfast!                             

Vegetable Manchow Soup

On a wintery rainy evening, the first thing that comes to your mind is pakoras with a hot cup of ginger tea. While there is nothing called winters in Singapore, the rainy season definitely pull the temperature down to pleasantly windy evenings. Although I was more inclined to make some spicy fries to go with this windy evening, my all-so-conscious hubby was in mood for some hot and spicy soup which not only serves his controlled diet but also his taste buds. The best answer to all his needs is this spicy tangy veg manchow soup, sans the crispy noodles and chilli oil.

2 cups assorted vegetables chopped (beans, carrot, corn, cabbage, capsicum or anything of your choice)
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 inch piece ginger, chopped
2 spring onion whites, chopped
1 sprig coriander leaves, chopped
1/2 medium sized tomato, chopped
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp chilli sauce
2 tsp vinegar
3 tbsp cornflour mixed in 1/2 cup water
Salt and pepper to taste
5 cups vegetable or chicken broth/water
2 spring onion greens for garnishing
1 tbsp oil

In a heavy bottomed pan, heat the oil and add the onion whites, coriander, ginger, and garlic and fry for 2 minutes. Add the assorted vegetables and fry for another 5-7 minutes till tender. Add the tomatoes and stir. Add the soy sauce, chilli sauce, salt, pepper, and the broth or water. Bring to a boil and cover and cook till vegetables are cooked. Stir in the cornflour mix and bring to a boil. Finally, add the vinegar and simmer for few minutes. Check the seasoning and remove from heat. Serve with spring onions and crispy fried noodles and chilli oil. I skipped both due to my diet conscious partner! It tasted lip smacking anyway!
                            B b.           

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Leftover Delight III- Crispy Rice Cakes

Leftover rice is an issue in every kitchen. Especially among Hindus, rice is considered as Goddess Lakshmi and to let it go waste is unacceptable. However, to make the exact quantity of rice for the family is something which even our seniors cannot achieve at times. The result is a bowl of rice most commonly found in the refrigerator, sometimes a day old or sometimes a week. When in India, I used to use the leftover rice to feed the birds. However, I am not left with that option anymore in Singapore. So while surfing on the net for some interesting bake recipes, I chanced upon this recipe which was so simple and can be given numerous interesting variations. 

2 cups leftover rice, at least a day old
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 inch piece ginger, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tbsp flour
2 tsp cornflour
1 egg (vegetarians can omit this)
Salt to taste
Coriander leaves, chopped
1+1 tbsp olive oil

In a pan, heat 1 tbsp oil and add the onions, ginger, and garlic and fry till golden brown. Add the rice and stir till there are no lumps and the oil has coated the rice properly. Add the dry spices and salt and fry for a few minutes. Remove from heat and let it cool.
In a bowl, beat the egg and add the flour, cornflour, and mix well till no lumps are formed. Add the rice and mix well. The mixture will be lumpy. With the back of the spoon, mash the rice a bit, if not completely. Add the coriander leaves and mix. In a pan, heat the remaining 1 tbsp oil and put spoonfuls of the batter into the pan. Flatten with the back of the spoon like a cake and fry till golden brown on both sides. Drain excess oil on paper towels and serve hot with your favorite chutney or ketchup. 


This recipe is my entry to Cooking with Seeds (CWS) event - Rice

Melony Raspberry Fruit Cobbler

Baking is one of my favorite means of cooking. I had made a raspberry dessert recently and to garnish it, I had bought a pack of fresh raspberries. However, the dessert did not turn out as expected and so the pack of raspberries was lying in the fridge along with some fresh musk melon. With nothing to do today evening, I decided to try out this recipe found on Allrecipes and I was quite pleased with the result. The preparation time is exactly 10 minutes (probably even under 10)! How I love such easy recipes. It's just as simple as waving your magic wand!

3 tbsp butter
3/4 cup flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup milk
2 cups fruits (raspberry or strawberry or cranberry or peaches or any fruit of your choice)
1 tbsp white sugar 

Set the oven at 175 degree celsius. Take a 9 inch round or 8 inch square baking dish and put the butter in it. Place the dish in the oven in the upper middle rack and pre- heat the oven while at the same time melting the butter. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add milk and make a smooth paste. Take out the dish from the oven and pour the batter into it. Arrange the fruit pieces carefully on top and sprinkle the 1 tbsp sugar. Bake for about 50 minutes or until golden brown on top and edges start coming off the sides. Serve hot or at room temperature with whipped cream or a dollop of vanilla ice cream and enjoy your deluciously easy cakey fruit cobbler.

Monday, 2 December 2013

Palak/Spinach Chicken

Greens should be a part of our regular diet as they are very rich in iron among other goodies. However, green is not a very favorite color of mine when it comes to veggies. Spinach is an exception though. Today's recipe is a very easy one and the source is from our very own Sanjeev Kapoor. The highlight of this recipe is the health factor. So without much ado, here is the simple route to yummy palak chicken.

250 gms chicken (I used boneless)
1 large onion chopped
3 cloves garlic chopped
1/2 inch piece ginger chopped
2 tbsp yogurt
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp garam masala powder
2 each of bay leaf, cardamom, and cloves
4-5 peppercorns
Salt to taste
2 cups spinach shredded
1 tbsp mustard oil
Fried onions for garnishing

Wash and cut the chicken and keep aside. In an pan, heat oil till smoky hot. Add bay leaf, peppercorns, cardamom, and cloves and fry for a minute. Add chopped onions, ginger, and garlic and fry till golden brown. Add the chicken pieces and the dry spices except garam masala. Add a little salt and fry till the chicken pieces are golden brown and the spices start leaving oil. Add the yogurt one tbsp at a time and fry. Add the shredded spinach and cover and cook on medium heat till the spinach is wilted and mashed. Add garam masala and cook without cover till gravy dries up. Serve hot with plain rice/roti.

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Seviyan Upma (Vermicelli Upma)

Breakfast is a challenge for most people. It becomes more of a challenge on weekdays when you have to prepare quickies for people going out as well as for people staying back at home. However, getting up in the morning and to think of cooking something which would please one and all and also easy to prepare is a difficult task. I face this challenge regularly and now have come to terms with it. On most days, I bake some takeaway goodies like pies and stuffed breads which can be easily warmed in the microwave. Today's recipe is a super quick recipe and takes exactly 15 minutes to prepare. The recipe was shared by my sister in law Archita long back and ever since it has become a regular in my kitchen. The best part is even my baby enjoys it and eats it happily. What else can you ask for!

1-2 cups vermicelli (seviyan)
1 medium onion, chopped
1/4 cup peanuts, roasted
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
Few curry leaves
1 tbsp oil
Salt to taste

In a pan, bring some water to boil and cook the seviyan till just soft, about 5-7 minutes. In another pan, heat the oil and crackle the mustard seeds and curry leaves. Add the onions and fry till translucent. Add the roasted peanuts and fry for sometime. At this time, you can add some chopped veggies as well. I skipped as my baby does not like chunky food. 
Meanwhile, drain the water from the cooked seviyan and run it through cold water. Now add the drained seviyan to the pan and mix well. Add salt and stir. Remove from heat and serve hot.